Wellness Works!

Telephonic Exercise Programs Can Reap Benefits!

Individuals who tend to be out of shape tend to shy away from corporate fitness centers and gyms. They are very self conscious about their bodies and feel intimidated by muscle bound body builders and cute young girls in scant workout clothes. Now there are telephonic tools to aid in accomplishing fitness goals.

Many companies today have implemented wellness programs. Most start with a biometric screening and a self reported Health Risk Assessment. Through these screening tools, risks for future conditions are identified. The key component then is the Wellness Coach. The Coach reviews all of the data and makes an outbound call to the participant.

The Wellness Coach becomes “the personal trainer”. The process starts with education of potential risks, motivational interviewing techniques, assessment of readiness to change, goal setting and a customized program for achieving the fitness goals.

“An effective telephonic intervention program for employees who do not utilize onsite fitness centers or programs must be flexible enough to be customized to meet the specific and unique needs of the participant. Potential participants have already demonstrated that they either are not motivated on their own or have other extenuating circumstances that are preventing participation in the onsite programming. The Wellness Coach must be able to help the participant identify and understand these factors, and develop a plan for addressing them” according to Melissa Welker, BS, LSW, MEd Lifestyle Management Supervisor for Harris HealthTrends, Inc.

The Wellness Coach will help the individual learn to incorporate exercise and fitness into their daily routines. They will do an assessment of the current lifestyle to include work and home environments. Time for scheduled exercise will be a huge factor. Family support also plays a key role. It is much easier to have an “exercise buddy”. Buddies’s encourage and “push” each other.

Ongoing, the Wellness Coach and the participant will have scheduled telephone appointments. The participant will report on exercise activities. If goals are met, then new goals will be set. If there were setbacks these will be acknowledged and new strategies will be implemented to avoid setbacks in the future.

Fitness can be accomplished telephonically if the proper pieces are in place. Remember, exercise is a lifestyle!